Jennifer Leslie is a 2014 graduate of the PsyD Program in Clinical Psychology at Antioch University, New England

Dissertation Committee

  • Theodore Ellenhorn, Ph.D., Committee Chair
  • Vincent Pignatiello, Psy.D. Committee Member
  • Rachael Goren-Watts, Psy.D. Committee Member


anorexia nervosa; recovery; eating disorders; client perspectives of recovery; mixed method

Document Type


Publication Date



Current research exposes the lack of a universal definition of recovery from Anorexia Nervosa (AN). Discrepancies in how the term is defined and used have created problems for clients, clinicians, and families; particularly around how insurance providers allot financial coverage for treatment. Additionally, there is a gap in the literature regarding the length of time clients consider appropriate for symptom abatement prior to being considered recovered. This dissertation utilized a mixed-methods approach to investigate how the term recovery had different meanings over the course of treatment for women previously treated for AN. Seventy-nine adult women participated in the web-based survey. Descriptive statistics and patterns of responding were identified using quantitative data. Content analysis was employed to analyze qualitative data that sought to gain insight into subjective definitions of recovery. Participant responses were coded and sorted into categories that were then used to establish a codebook of the major themes. All participants reported a shift in personal meanings of recovery over time, as they were asked to reflect on how they viewed recovery at the beginning and the end of treatment, as well as at the time of survey administration. Participants were also asked to report on symptoms they believe are important to address in order to consider one's self recovered, in addition to the length of time symptoms must be gone. This dissertation also attends to the unique nature of individual responses and explores suggestions to assist future research and clinicians who work with this population. Limitations of this study are also shared.


Dr. Leslie is finishing her postdoctoral year at Temple University and was recently hired as a staff psychologist. She currently lives in Philadelphia and is studying to take the EPPP licensure exam. 5/2015

ORCID : 0000-0002-7628-5159